18 May 2020

18 May News : India to experience worst recession with 45% fall in second quarter, says Goldman Sachs/ Jamaat Islami Hind's Sharia Council urges govt to exempt places of worship from lockdown, allow religious practices by maintaining social distancing. Jamia panel accuses Delhi police of ''witch hunting'' after arrest of Jamia student leader Asif Iqbal Tanha; Chidambaram, SIO also condemn Delhi polce.


18 May 2020: 24 Ramazan 1441: Vol: 12, No: 212


Covid-19: India to experience worst recession with 45% fall in second quarter, says Goldman Sachs

US-based multinational investment bank Goldman Sachs has predicted that the Indian economy will experience the worst recession ever after its already weakened state was further dragged down by countrywide lockdown. This is the third time that Goldman Sachs has slashed its forecast for India’s economic growth for 2020-’21.GDP will contract by an annualised 45% in the second quarter from the prior three months, compared with the previous forecast of a 20% slump. A robust recovery of 20% is now likely in the third quarter. However, projections for the fourth and first of the next year remain unaffected at 14% and 6.5%. Centre’s Rs 20 lakh crore economic package to revive the battered economy is unlikely to have an immediate impact on growth, the bank’s economists said in a report. “There have been a series of structural reform announcements across several sectors over the past few days,” it said. “These reforms are more medium-term in nature, and we therefore do not expect these to have an immediate impact on reviving growth.” Centre claims the economic package is equivalent to 10% of India’s GDP. But analysts have pointed out that a significant portion of that amount includes measures which have been earlier announced and efforts by RBI. Calculations further assume economic activity even though govt’s actual expenditure is far smaller than the stated amount.The economists of Goldman Sachs observed that it is not just stay-at-home orders and other govt restrictions that have chilled economic activity. Despite relaxations, major parts of economy operated at significantly less than full capacity in the third phase of the lockdown. Moreover, restarting during extended lockdown period has continued to pose challenges, especially in red zones, even if the rules allowed them to do so, the bank said. “Supply chains are improving, but are still operating at low levels, along with missing logistics, and weak end-demand,” report stated.

India to witness worst recession in 2nd quarter: Goldman Sachs


Economic package ‘hopelessly inadequate’, amounts to only Rs 1.86 crore: Chidambaram

New Delhi :Leading the charge against govt over economic package announced to overcome the impact of coronavirus , Congress leader P Chidambaram today called it “hopelessly inadequate” while seeking a revised and comprehensive package of 10 per cent of GDP.“Fiscal stimulus package is hopelessly inadequate given gravity of the economic crisis as it amounts to only Rs 1.86 crore, which is 0.91 per cent of GDP,” former finance minister said.Centre has unveiled a Rs 20 lakh crore economic relief package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as part of Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign while pushing new reforms in sectors such as agriculture,public sector enterprises, and defence production. However, much of Rs 20 lakh crore Covid-19 economic package has been liquidity driven, with little burden on Central exchequer. It has been primarily aimed at pushing banks to extend credit on back of govt guarantees to sectors that fuel the economy — small businesses, non-banking financial companies, micro finance institutions and housing finance companies. Chidambaram said the stimulus package had left several sections like the poor, migrants, farmers, labourers, workers, small shopkeepers and middle class high and dry. indian express


Is Modi govt trying to decongest Indian cities? Its economic package gives that impression: the print

The economic package announced by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has a strong rural bias, a primarily liquidity package for industry, and a few schemes for urban poor. It proposes a number of coping strategies like delays in the bankruptcy laws, tax filings, decriminalisation of violation of compliances, and a set of long-term economic reforms. In its social security outreach, the package assumes that people will go back to their villages and try to find work there. If there are fewer jobs in cities, incomes in rural India need to be boosted, for which many other schemes for dairy, infrastructure, fishery, herbs, micro food units and farms have been announced, in addition to laws for freeing up farmers’ access to markets.The biggest demand-boosting measure in govt’s stimulus package is an increased allocation of Rs 40,000 crore to MGNREGA.It seems that government is trying to decongest cities, as no large urban welfare programme or significant urban unemployed assistance programme was launched.the print


Ex BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, AAP MP Sanjay Singh held for protesting at Rajghat over migrant workers’ plight

New Delhi:Former Union minister Yashwant Sinha sat on a dharna at the Rajghat here on Monday, demanding that the armed forces be deployed to help migrant workers reach their homes. Sinha was joined by AAP leaders Sanjay Singh and Dilip Pandey who demanded proper arrangements for moving stranded migrant workers back to their states.They were, however, picked up Delhi Police later in the evening and taken to a nearby police station."We have just been arrested by Delhi Police," Sinha tweeted.Sinha, a former BJP leader and a trenchant critic of the Narendra Modi government, said civilian authorities, be it central or state dispensations, have "failed" migrant workers who have been compelled to walk on roads, with some even dying in the process."Our simple demand is that the responsibility be given to the armed forces and paramilitary forces that they should, with all resources at their command and with whatever civilian resources they can commandeer, send these migrant workers to their homes with dignity," he said. Before being taken into custody by the police, Sinha said he will continue with his dharma until his demands are met. MP Sanjay Singh alleged that BJP just cares about the rich and it has left the poor to fend for themselves. "The government has no strategy because it has no will to help the migrants. The BJP is an anti-poor government. You can call people from abroad but not help the migrants walking on the streets. The ongoing crisis has proved that," he said. AAP MLA Dilip Pandey said govt should show some sensitivity towards the migrants."The government has capacity to run 20,000 trains daily and ferry 2.3 crore people daily across the country. It should use this capacity to help people," he said.AAP leaders later protested against the police decision to break up their dharna and detain them.Sanjay Singh asked if it is a crime to protest for the rights of migrants. PTI


Jamaat Islami Hind's Sharia Council urges govt to exempt places of worship from lockdown, allow religious practices by maintaining social distancing

New Delhi: Sharia Council of Jamaat Islami Hind (JIH), here on Monday, urged the government to exempt the places of worship from the lockdown and allow people to do their religious practices by maintaining social distancing. In a statement, JIH said under the present circumstances, the Eid ul Fitr prayer should be allowed at Eidgahs, Jama Masjid and local mosques (depending on number of people permitted). Otherwise, prayers be offered at home.It also appealed against crowding market in the last days of Ramadan. On the day of Eid, dress in whatever clothes, old or new, are available, and avoid meeting and greeting people. "Please remember the poor, the needy on the day of Eid along with Muslim prisoners and their relatives," said Jalaluddin Umri.The council said last Friday of Ramadan was like other Fridays and didn''t have any special significance. "Under the present circumstances, if there are 4 people in the house, then they may offer the Friday prayer or the Zohar (Midday) prayer. If one is alone, he should offer the Friday prayer individually," it said.IANS

JIH urges govt to exempt places of worship from lockdown


Punjab: Eid likely to be low-key affair, religious leaders urge people to pray at home

Ludhiana: Ramzan has been different this time round, as gatherings were not allowed at mosques. Now, Eid-ul-Fitr, which is less than 10 days away, is also going to be a low-key affair.Shahi Imam Punjab, Maulana Habib-ur-Rehman Saani Ludhianvi, said though they will come with detailed advisory for Eid in next few days, since gathering is not allowed, only five persons will offer prayers at Jamia Masjid. He added that they will be asking the community members across the state to offer Eid prayers at home.Mufti-e-Azm Punjab Ertiqa-ul-Hasan said they are yet to decide about the message for people and will take the final call after 25th Ramzan. “We will come out with pamphlet or video message for Eid after 25th Ramzan,” he added.Many community members also said like Ramzan, Eid too will be low-key affair for them. timesofindia


Religious heads in Kerala want temples, mosques, churches to open in a staggered manner

 Several heads of shrines, cutting across religious lines, in Kerala have written to the state government seeking its permission to open temples, mosques and churches in a staggered manner in view of the lockdown restrictions that were imposed since end-March to contain the spread of the raging coronavirus disease  outbreak.They have reached out to state govt amid a growing cash crunch, as devotees are staying away from the places of worship due to the pandemic.However, the Centre’s announcement to impose lockdown 4:0, which has come into effect from Monday and will be enforced till May 31, has further disappointed the shrine heads.Cardinal George Alencherry, Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Church, wrote to Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday seeking permission to open Christian religious centres to conduct daily ceremonies with the faithful in a restricted manner.All India Imam Council has also approached govt. Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB), which runs 2,000-odd temples in south and central Kerala, including the hill shrine Sabarimala in Pathanamthitta district, has urged the state government to at least allow devotees, who want to make significant offerings.“Many are devoid of spiritual support these days. If the lockdown continues, it’ll lead to a growing psychological conflict. No one will be able to prevent such consequences. Churches must be allowed to open in a restricted manner. Religious ceremonies are essential for a believer for solace and inner peace,”said Cardinal Alencherry.Syro-Malabar church, which runs thousands of educational institutions, hospitals and other charitable establishments in Kerala, aftershocks of lockdown restrictions are deeper, as it is struggling to meet the expenses required for both institutional upkeep and payment of staff salaries.Though the church introduced virtual offerings they failed to attract believers, say insiders.Muslim bodies stand divided over the lockdown norms.All India Imam Council has written to CM Vijayan, urging him to open mosques in a limited manner. Samastha Kerala Sunni Federation leader Basheer Faizy Deshamangalam in a social media post commented that it is unfair to keep mosques closed when liquor stores and other establishments are allowed to open.But many within the community don’t share Deshamangalam’s views. “We need to apply our minds. It’s painful that all mosques are closed during the holy month of Ramzan. It’d be difficult to maintain social distancing norms if the mosques are opened,” said a senior IUML leader.TDB had introduced an online facility for major offerings in 27 prominent shrines across the state, which met a lukewarm response. Now, the board plans to urge the govt to allow ‘darshan’ for those who book significant offerings online. hindustantimes

Muslims in Kerala confused about relaxation for mosques

Gujarat: Social, political bodies divided over call for mosques to open for Eid

Ahmedabad :Ahead of Eid, a few political and social organisations are divided over the prospect of re-opening mosques on festive day amid Coronavirus. Gujarat Chand Committee associated with Shahi Jama Masjid of Ahmedabad has written a letter to CM Vijay Rupani demanding that mosques be allowed to open on the occasion of Eid. Mufti Shabbir Alam, president of Gujarat Chand Committee, said, “Eid comes once a year and so, we have requested CM that if there is no threat then the devotees be allowed to offer namaz in mosques. However, this permission should be given only if there is no harm in assembling at mosques because we have to look after our lives, country and imaan (faith).”Reacting to the letter sent by Chand Committee, VHP Gujarat has also written a letter to CM criticising the request made by the committee.In the letter written by Ashok Rawal, general secretary of VHP Gujarat, organisation has termed request by Chand committee as “utterly shameful and condemnable” and has asked CM to decline the request.“At a time when the entire country has united to fight against the pandemic, Gujarat Chand Committee has requested to open mosques on the occasion of Eid. It is utterly shameful and condemnable and we request CM to not give permission for it,” said Rawal in the letter.In Bhavnagar, minority department of Bhavnagar District Congress has also written a letter to CM requesting him to allow people to visit each others’ homes on the occasion of Eid. indianexpress


Manipur Muslim body urges not to relax lockdown on Eid

Imphal:A Muslim-based body in Manipur has urged the state government not to relax lockdown and public curfew and to enforce it on Eid ul-Fitr day which falls on May 23 or 24. Manipuri Muslim Online Forum (MMOF) feared that the state government may consider relaxing lockdown on the day and drew the attention of the state chief minister not to consider the same in the backdrop of rising COVID-19 positive cases in the state. nagalandpost


Eid: Jalna Muslim leaders ask people to observe lockdown norms

Jalna: Muslim community leaders in Jalna in Maharashtra on Monday said they have requested the administration to not allow shops to open for Eid festivities as it could dilute the lockdown in place for the coronavirus outbreak."On behalf of Muslim community here, we have submitted a memorandum to the district collector to not allow the opening of shops. The Muslim community has decided to celebrate Eid with simplicity during this tough time by helping the poor and needy," said Jamaat-e-Islami-Hind state unit secretary Shaikh Mujeeb.Jamiat Ulema Marathwada unit vice president Maulana Nasrullah Hussaini said the administration, doctors, and thousands of frontline workers are fighting to contain outbreak, and it was the duty of all people to cooperate.PTI



No distractions and time to introspect, devout Muslims find silver lining in lockdown Ramzan

New Delhi: The nationwide lockdown had ensured this year’s Ramzan was going to be like no other in living memory -- no iftaar parties, no meeting with friends, no late night shopping, no prayers at mosques. But many devout Muslims are appreciative the lockdown has helped them stay true to the spirit of the holy month. Three weeks into fasting, many Muslims feel lockdown has a silver lining. It has left them with plenty of time to read the Quran, attend virtual Quran classes and focus on prayers.After all, Ramzan is a time for self-discipline and introspection, they point out. Tanvir Parvez, a lawyer from Ghaziabad, was among those bracing himself for a Ramzan devoid of its usual charms of special prayers in mosques (Taraweeh), sitting with his friends and family to break the fast at iftaar time and gatherings to discuss teachings of Prophet Mohammad. Parvez, who has never missed Taraweeh during Ramzan, said he was gutted to learn that this year prayers would not be allowed in mosques due to the lockdown. People are also relishing the time they are getting to introspect and learn more about Islam with no distractions such as grand iftaar parties and shopping sprees.Hasan Askari, an agriculturist based in Ghaziabad, said the month usually raced by with a string of iftaar parties and endless shopping trips, but not this time.“Lockdown is proving to be a boon with distractions like shopping and endless iftaar parties not there, allowing me to read books on Islamic teachings which my brother-in-law gets from Jeddah and watching Islamic sermons online,” Askari told PTI.Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind’s chief Maulana Arshad Madani said it is heartening to see Muslims finding positivity in these difficult times and using the lockdown downtime to learn more about Islamic teachings and Quran.“Another significant trend witnessed this year is that seeing the sufferings of migrant labourers and the needy, Muslims have undertaken charity at a scale not seen before,” Madani said.Another popular trend this Ramzan has been Muslims watching religious programmes and taking upQuran classes online.Professor Salim Engineer, vice president of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind said his organisation is webcasting many religious programmes on its YouTube channel to explain meaning of Quranic verses and important Islamic issues.“We are also webcasting programmes for non-Muslims. Recently, we shot one with religious leaders from different religions discussing importance of fasting.In mosques, 1,000-1,500 people would listen to discussions. This year, many thousands are watching these programmes online during Ramzan,” he told PTI.


Refrain from shopping for EID festival: Badruddin Ajmal

Guwahati: Lok Sabha MP and chief of AIUDF Badruddin Ajmal asked people from muslim community to refrain from Shopping for the EID festival. Ajmal who is alumnus of Darul Uloom Deoband tweeted, “Please refrain yourself from shopping for Eid. Wearing new clothes in Eid is not Farz, so kindly stop endangering your own and other people's lives by crowding the market place in the time of Covid-19. Else it won't be shopping for Eid but you would be shopping for death”. Ajmal in a video message said that there is 10 days left for EID however the whole world is witnessing lockdown due to lockdown. “I am saddened to see some Muslim women are going shopping in Hojai, Kolgachia and Barpeta. Are you buying clothes or death,” he asked. economic times


Delhi allows buses, taxis, autorickshaws; odd-even for shops in markets

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal today announced steps to restart the economy amid relaxation in fourth phase of the lockdown to tackle the spread of Covid-19.“We have to open our economy gradually. All industries will be allowed to reopen in Delhi. Construction activities will restart but only local workers will be allowed. Workers beyond Delhi’s borders will not be allowed,” he said in a video address. Containment zones will continue to remain sealed. All private offices will be allowed to reopen in the national capital but Kejriwal said he would encourage employees to work from home.All shops will reopen with odd-even formula except those selling essential items which will remain open on all days. Restaurants can open but only for take-away food.Kejriwal also announced the resumption of public transport such as buses, taxis and autorickshaws. “Autorickshaw, cycle rickshaw will be allowed to ply with only one passenger. Taxi and cabs will be allowed to 2 passengers while maxicabs will carry 5 passengers,” he said.“Buses will carry a maximum of 20 passengers who will be screened before boarding. Transport department will ensure social distancing.”2 wheelers will be allowed without any pillion.“Delhi has reported 10,054 cases of Covid-19 out of which 4,485 people have been cured. 160 people have died so far,” Kejriwal said. While acknowledging that inter-state travel has been allowed by Centre depending on various states and UTs agreeing to the conditions, he said some categories of essential service providers and govt and other staff dealing in essential services and commodities will be allowed to cross the borders without any hindrance. Also, he said, all vehicles carrying essential goods would be provided easy access.


Karnataka govt bans entry of people from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Kerala, Tamil Nadu till May 31

Karnataka govt today banned entry of people from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Kerala and Tamil Nadu till May 31. CM BS Yediyurappa while adressing media said,"We have decided not to allow entry of people from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Kerala and Tamil Nadu till May 31." This came after Yediyurappa held a meeting with ministers and senior officers to discuss the guidelines issued by Centre regarding 4th phase of nationwide lockdown. "State road transport corporation buses in Karnataka and private buses will run. Strict lockdown measures in containment zones and economic activities will be permitted in other areas. Sundays will be total lockdown across state,"he added.freepressjournal


Tamil Nadu: Bus services resume in 25 districts; no relaxation for Chennai

Chennai :Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisamy Sunday announced that the lockdown will be extended in Tamil Nadu till May 31. The government has also given a few relaxations such as resumption of public transportation in 25 districts where cases have come down significantly over the last 14 days. In a statement, Palaniswami announced few relaxations for 25 districts. In these districts, bus services within district will resume from Monday and there will be no requirement of a TN e-pass. indian express


UP: FIR Against Journalist for Report on Mismanagement at Quarantine Centre

New Delhi: In the latest instance of harassment of the media for critical reporting, Uttar Pradesh administration has lodged an FIR against Ravindra Saxena, a journalist at Today-24 news portal for reporting on mismanagement and negligence at a quarantine centre in Sitapur district.In a video report, Saxena spoke to people at a quarantine centre in Maholi tehsil of Sitapur district of eastern Uttar Pradesh, who alleged that they were served rotten rice.“We had gone to meet SDM Shashi Bhushan Rai for some news where we saw a person had come along with the rotten rice to make a complain[t] to the SDM. We spoke to him on camera and he told us how they were being served rotten rice at the quarantine center, but the authorities were not taking action. After this, we visited the quarantine center and made a detailed video of the mismanagement there,” Saxena told Newslaundry. The Wire


Bhopal youth step up through charity in fight against COVID-19

Bhopal: Many NGOs, social organisations and few individuals realising the pains of have-nots, stranded migrant workers and underprivileged sections of the society have come forward to satiate their stomach’s gnawing experience. As elsewhere in the country in Bhopal too these good Samaritans are leaving no stone unturned to see no one is left out and sleeps hungry. There is healthy competition between them to reach out to more and more people and hand them cooked food packets and in some cases kits of grocery items with some cash for a week, 10 days or even a month. The beneficiaries are mostly daily wagers, migrant workers, destitute, beggars etc.In various locations of Bhopal and its outskirts total 91 kitchens are operative feeding several thousands of people in need following the inception of the lockdown in the city. Local MLA Arif Masood, from Bhopal, is funding 14 kitchens in various localities of the city being run by his fans club supporters. Cooked food is being distributed to nearly 18-20,000 people daily irrespective of the caste, creed or religion.  Similarly, another local MLA Arif Aqueel, is not far behind and extending all help to needy during lockdown. Mohammad Ahsan Imtiaz, retired Indian Navy personnel is funding ration for the have-nots of the locality by authorising a grocery merchant to provide necessary items every week to the people who approach him for their requirements of two square meals a day. Jamat-e-Islami Hind(JIH), Bhopal unit is in the forefront as it is providing relief to affected countrymen due to Covid-19 lockdown since 27th March till 9th May worth Rs.62,16,498/-. The details of the relief are: Daily 10,000 cooked food packets, 2,150 Ramadan ration kits & 21,300 Kg. Wheat & Rice grains having been distributed to the needy people. In Bagh Farhat Afza Colony, under the leadership of Qazi Asifuddin for last one and half a month cooked food is being delivered at homes to people who can be counted as underprivileged class.  Meanwhile, a newly formed NGO christened as “Humble Heart” led by Zenul Khan came up into existence soon after the lockdown was announced to feed the hungry mouths.siasat


Migrants pelt stones at police, public in Ahmedabad

Nearly 100 migrant workers gathered on a busy road connecting IIM Ahmedabad with Vastrapur area here on Monday and pelted stones at police and people passing by during lockdown, an official said.A local claimed the migrant workers were demanding that they be allowed to go back to their native places. Police lobbed teargas shells to disperse the rioters and detained several suspects, an official from the city police control room said.Nearly 100 migrants suddenly came on road in the morning and engaged in indiscriminate stone-pelting, he said. They hurled stones at the police and people passing by in vehicles, he said.PTI


Tablighi Jamaat: Haryana arrests 107 foreign nationals, all sent to judicial custody

Haryana police have claimed to have arrested all the foriegn nationals who were part Tablighi Markaz and had entered and stayed in Haryana in the violation of various provisions of foreigners act.As many as 107 such foreign nationals were booked in 5 cases registered against them. Maximum such foreign nationnals were booked in Palwal and Nuh.TOI


Mumbai: Tablighi Jamat leader killed in road mishap

Navi Mumbai: A 67-year-old religious leader of Shura Tablighi Jamat, who along with 7 others was travelling to Ahmedabad from Karnataka in a tempo traveller, died in an accident at Kamothe on Sunday afternoon.Kamrul Mumtazali Islam and his 6 associates had gone to Karnataka for a religious meet before lockdown and had been stuck in the State. “After Karnataka govt lifted travel restrictions, Islam, the group leader, and the other 6 underwent COVID-19 test. After their results came negative, they applied for the permission to travel,” SPI Babasaheb Tupe from Kamothe police station said.After driving down Mumbai-Pune expressway, their vehicle rammed into a stationary bus on Mumbai-Sion Highway. “The tempo driver dozed off and lost control of the vehicle. Islam, who was seated next to the driver, sustained injuries,” Tupe said.thehindu



UP: Migrant under quarantine dies, tests Covid positive

Lucknow :A 38-year-old migrant labourer, who died at a quarantine centre in Prayagraj on Saturday, tested positive for coronavirus on Sunday.The worker, with his pregnant wife and four-month-old son, had returned from Mumbai on Wednesday and they were staying at a quarantine centre since then. Hailing from Pandwa village in Prayagraj, he was working as carpenter in Mumbai. After the death, his sample was again collected and sent for testing.indianexpress


On long journey back home, some welcome relief for migrants in MP

For thousands of migrants going from Maharashtra to their homes in UP and Bihar, the bypass checkpoint at MP’s Vidisha-Raisen border comes as a relief. No one walks past this point, or goes ahead empty stomach. Maybe because it is set up just below hill that houses Emperor Ashoka’s Sanchi Stupas, but this checkpost seems to practice the ancient king’s preachings.“Daily, we see about 10,000-15,000 people pass by, mostly from Maharashtra. We are making sure not a single person passes by on foot, or even bicycle. We accommodate them in empty buses and trucks,” says Ishwar Baghel, Sub Inspector, Vidisha. “If the need arises, the collector arranges for a bus. But no one is passing on foot.”Baghel, who has been deployed at the state border since March 28, says the number of walkers have reduced in the past few days. “But whoever comes walking is provided with transportation.”Other checkpoints in MP are also advised to help passing migrants. “For over 8 days now, we have been distributing free food items like khichdi, dal-chawal and poori-sabji. We provided food to 5,000 people daily when this migration was at its peak,” explains Dinesh Saxena,employee of Vidisha’s Municipal Committee. Now, he says,they offer tea and biscuits, “as passersby have decreased in the last couple of days”.indianexpress


Coronavirus lockdown: 10 lakh jobs lost in Punjab; state to lose Rs 50,000 crore this year

Around 10 lakh jobs have been lost in Punjab and the state is set to lose a whopping Rs 50,000 crore this year due to the coronavirus lockdown, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said on Sunday while hinting at some "tough measures" for revenue generation.Hover over the keyword to read more about the topic without leaving this page!In an interview to PTI, Singh said the state was losing Rs 3,000 crore every month on the economic front. CM said with some experts predicting a peak in coronavirus pandemic in July and August, Punjab was preparing itself "for the worst", and the massive influx of migrants and Indian returnees from abroad was emerging as top disease management challenge.PTI


Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra Police reaches 1,273

Pune :As the number of COVID-19 positive cases in Maharashtra crossed 33,000 as of Monday morning, number of positive cases in Maharashtra Police reached 1,273 with 11 having lost their lives to viral disease.

Covid-19: UP accepts Priyanka Gandhi’s proposal to deploy 1,000 buses to bring in migrants

Uttar Pradesh government on Monday accepted Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi’s proposal to deploy 1,000 buses to bring in migrant workers stuck at the state borde. Uttar Pradesh Chief Secretary Awanish Awasthi wrote to Gandhi and asked her to provide details of the 1,000 buses and their drivers without delay.


2 AMU Students Win First Prize for Their Design Idea on Remote Monitoring of Coronavirus Patients

ALIGARH: 2 computer engineering students of AMU took part in a competition on design idea for remote monitoring of COVID-19 patients and jointly won first prize worth Rs 30,000. Around 800 students from across the country had participated in the competition. Mohd Asif Zameer (team leader) and Danish Asad Khan, students of computer engineering at Zakir Hussain College of Engineering and Technology, AMU, had taken part in the contest.“In the challenging time of COVID-19 pandemic when we are facing lockdown, the Aligarh Muslim University continues to steal the show as its students team comprising Mohammed Asif Zamir (Team Leader) and Danish Khan, (Department of Computer Engineering, ZHCET (AMU) participated in DE-COVIDETHON and presented their design idea on "Remote Monitoring of Patients and applying Deep Learning on the collected Dataset to predict COVID-19" organized by Dare2Compete (D2C),” said V-C  office.India Tomorrow


Covid-19: ICMR’s new strategy says asymptomatic, high-risk patients to be tested within 5 to 10 days

Indian Council of Medical Research on Monday revised its testing strategy for the coronavirus to allow tests for asymptomatic, direct and high-risk contacts of confirmed cases. These contacts will be tested once between days five and 10 of coming into contact with the patient, instead of between day five and 14.All symptomatic front line workers involved in “containment and mitigation” efforts against the pandemic will also be tested, ICMR said. In the previous set of guidelines issued on April 9, the top medical body had allowed tests for only symptomatic health care workers. The new guidelines also allow for tests for migrant labourers and other people who have returned to their hometowns.



At WHO, India joins 61 nations to seek source of coronavirus

India is among 62 countries that have moved a proposal at the World Health Assembly to “identify the zoonotic source” of the coronavirus and asked for an “impartial, independent and comprehensive evaluation” of WHO’s response to Covid-19. China and US are not part of the resolution.The proposal is part of a seven-page draft resolution moved by 35 countries and the 27-member European Union, and is likely to be taken up on Monday at Assembly, which is the decision-making body of WHO.The resolution is being backed by 3 of the 5 permanent members of UN Security Council — UK, Russia and France — along with Japan, Australia, South Korea, New Zealand, South Africa and Turkey, among others. But Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Maldives and Afghanistan are not signatories to the resolution. From SAARC nations, only Bangladesh and Bhutan have signed up.The virus is widely believed to have originated from China’s Wuhan, where the first case of Covid-19 was reported.indianexpress

Covid-19 origin under probe, WHO’s Tedros Adhanom sends Prez Xi a special invite


China defends coronavirus handling at WHO assembly

China supports a comprehensive review of the global response to the pandemic led by WHO after the virus is brought under control, Chinese President Xi Jinping has said.In a video speech to WHO, Xi said China has been open and transparent about COVID-19 outbreak that first emerged in the country in late 2019 and will support an investigation conducted in an objective and impartial manner.Xi also pledged $2bn over two years to help with the COVID-19 response and said any vaccines developed against the disease by China will be made a public good.

China’s virus vaccine will be global public good, says Xi Jinping at WHO meet

Oman bans all forms of gatherings during Eid

Muscat: All Eid gatherings including Eid prayers and collective celebrations will be banned in Oman during Eid Al Fitr, the Supreme Committee to deal with COVID-19 in the Sultanate announced on Monday.Oman police will be in charge of monitoring people, public and private entities’ commitment to the committee’s decision.All violators of these decisions will be fined and jailed, the committee said, adding that it was decided to reopen some economic and industrial activities while adhering to precautionary measures.“Everyone is required to wear face masks in public places, economic and industrial workplaces and public transport,” the committee said. gulfnews


 Kuwait and Qatar say wear face masks or face jail

Kuwait and Qatar both said on Sunday that they would start jailing people or fining them thousands of dollars for failing to wear face masks in public to combat coronavirus.Kuwait's Health Ministry said anyone caught may face as many as three months in prison, while Qatar TV reported the maximum penalty there would be three years.In Kuwait, the maximum fine stood at 5,000 dinars ($16,200), and in Qatar, 200,000 riyals ($55,000), Reuters reported.The six Gulf states have reported a total of more than 137,400 infections with 693 deaths from the virus. Cases in the region were initially linked to travel, but later saw a spread among low-income migrant workers in cramped quarters.Saudi Arabia, with a population of about 30 million people, has the highest count at over 54,700 cases with 312 deaths.middleeasteye


Pak Jamaat-e-Islami launches ‘blessing basket’ initiative for minorities

Jamaat-e-Islami Pakistan's Karachi chapter launched a new relief campaign on Sunday to support needy people from minority communities affected by the ongoing lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Al-Khidmat Foundation (AKF), a charity arm of the JI, has set up a supermarket called ‘Al-Khidmat Blessing Basket’, in Clifton, where the poor and needy people from various non-Muslims communities, including Christians, Hindus and Sikhs, will be given tokens to shop essential items. JI Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman inaugurated the relief initiative, and said the government had completely failed to give relief to the needy people affected by the lockdown. On the occasion, leaders of minority communities praised the JI’s role in providing relief to their community members and said that since the start of the lockdown, the JI and its charity front had been helping them in the troubled time. A few weeks ago, the AKF had been helping disinfect mosques, churches, temples and gurdwaras in various areas of the city. thenews


As mosques reopen in West Africa COVID-19 fears grow

Dakar:It's been a Ramadan unlike any other for Abdourahmane Sall, far from the mosque during Muslim holy month as coronavirus cases mount. With only a little over a week left, he decided joining thousands of others in tradition was worth risk after authorities allowed prayers to resume. Men formed orderly lines outside Massalikul Jinaan mosque in Dakar as they waited to receive hand sanitiser before entering while uniformed police watched on nearby.AP


Algeria dismisses suggestion for nationwide curfew during Eid

Algeria’s Supreme Security Council announced on Saturday that it would continue an “existing nationwide partial curfew”, which has been imposed by the government to curb the novel coronavirus, during the upcoming Muslim Eid Al-Fitr holiday.In its weekly meeting, the council said would not impose a “comprehensive nationwide curfew” during Muslim holiday as recently proposed by the country’s Coronavirus Monitoring and Follow-up Committee.The meeting was reported to have been chaired by the Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Prime Minister Abdulaziz Jarad, the army chief Said Chengriha and other government officials.


UN chief asks Bangladesh to move Rohingya to refugee camps

Hundreds of Rohingya rescued by Bangladesh and sent to a flood-prone island after being stranded at sea for weeks should be moved to existing refugee camps, UN secretary-general said.Antonio Guterres made appeal to Bangladesh's foreign minister in a letter that was obtained on Sunday by AFP .Rohingya were rescued in early May after floating adrift in the Bay of Bengal and sent to Bhashan Char island - a silty strip of land that is vulnerable to monsoon storms.


Brazil's president pushes for end to lockdown

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro is rallying his supporters to back his call to end the lockdown.He has attacked governors who have introduced restrictions in an effort to stop the spread of virus. President's push to reopen comes despite more than 15,000 deaths in Brazil, with no signs of slowing.



Chinese state media says its troops tightened control in Galwan Valley after India face-off: theprint

New Delhi: Chinese border defence troops have made the “necessary moves” and “enhanced control measures” at Galwan Valley in Eastern Ladakh, the country’s state media has reported. Galwan Valley is the region where Chinese soldiers clashed with Indian Army resulting in several injuries earlier this month. The report by Global Times, said China’s border defence troops have taken necessary measures to strengthen an on-the-spot response and control of border areas, “resolutely safeguarding China’s sovereignty and security and maintaining peace and stability in border areas”. The confirmation by China of increased tensions at the LAC comes amidst a move by India to downplay the incident. “Temporary and short duration face-offs between border guarding troops do occur along LAC due to the differing perceptions of the alignment of boundaries, which are not resolved,” Army chief Gen. M.M. Naravane had said in a statement last Thursday. “There were two incidents at Eastern Ladakh and North Sikkim where aggressive behaviour by both sides resulted in minor injuries to troops, post which both sides disengaged after dialogue and interaction at local level.” Global Times report has blamed India for the incident on evening of 5 May when Chinese troops attacked Indian soldiers near Galwan river in Eastern Ladakh.Chinese troops had objected to Indian presence there claiming it was their territory, which the Army had rejected.Giving its version of events, Global Times, citing sources, said that since early May, India has been crossing the boundary line in Galwan Valley region and entering Chinese territory. theprint

China accuses Indian troops of trespass in Galwan Valley region in Aksai Chin


Kashmir: Hizb militant linked to RSS man’s murder killed

Jammu :A Hizbul Mujahideen militant linked to killing of RSS functionary Chanderkant Sharma and his personal security officer in 2019 was killed in an encounter with security forces on Sunday, police said. An Army jawan and another militant were also killed in gunfight in Doda district’s Gundana area, they said. IGP, Jammu Zone, Mukesh Singh, identified one of slain militants as Tahir Bhat. indianexpress



Another Jamia Student Asif Tanha Arrested, Students Launch Social Media Campaign for His Release

New Delhi:Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) student Asif Iqbal Tanha, who was arrested in connection with organising anti-CAA protests and violence on December 15 last year, has been remanded to judicial custody till May 31. 24-year-old student studying his BA(Third Year) in Persian language was arrested in connection with FIR number 298/19 registered at Jamia Nagar Police Station on Dec.16. is name is mentioned as an accused in FIR. A Crime Branch official said that Tanha was a key member of Jamia Coordination Committee (JCC) and took active part in organising the anti-CAA protests outside the Jamia campus that resulted into a violent incident on December 15.Police said that Tanha is a close associate of Umar Khalid, Sharjil Imam, Meeran Haider and Safoora who have been the key members of anti-CAA protests and subsequent riots. According to police, Tanha is also a member of SIO. Hailing from Bihar, Tanha lived in a rented accommodation in Shaheen Bagh. His parents live in Bihar.Before his arrest, Tanha was called by police several times and questioned by Delhi Police Special Cell. He was taken in detention on Saturday but shown arrested on Sunday when he was presented before a metropolitan magistrate who remanded him to judicial custody. Meanwhile, Jamia students have launched #ReleaseAsifIqbalTanha and #ReleaseAsifTanha campaign on the social media. indiatomorrow

Jamia panel accuses Delhi police of ''witch hunting'' after arrest of Jamia student leader Asif Iqbal Tanha

New Delhi:Jamia Coordination Committee (JCC) on Monday accused Delhi Police of "witch hunting" Jamia Millia students after Asif Iqbal Tanha was arrested in connection with the violence in Jamia area during a protest against the CAA in December last year.JCC comprises students and alumni of the university. The group was formed after alleged police brutality on the campus on December 15 after an anti-CAA protest.It claimed that Tanha was arrested on Sunday from his residence."Tanha, has been a vocal leader of JCC and a prominent face of anti-CAA protest across India. Earlier, 3 of JCC leaders Meeran Haidar, Safoora Zargar, and Shifa-ur-Rahman were arrested for anti-CAA protests and allegedly instigating riots in northeast Delhi."Instead of enquiring into the northeast Delhi violence and arresting real culprits, Delhi police is shamelessly witch-hunting Jamia student leaders. While all conspirators and perpetrators of northeast Delhi violence are roaming free, it is our leaders who are being sent to jail and slapped with draconian laws," JCC said.JCC demanded the release of all activists arrested in connection with anti-CAA protests."We reiterate that we will not yield to the intimidations of Delhi Police but will continue our fight against laws like CAA/NRC/NPR,"JCC said.PTI


Jamia arrest is to create fear among students: Chidambaram

Former Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram has lashed out at govt for arresting Jamia students and alleged that it is being done to create fear amongst students so that they don''t participate in any agitation. Chidambaram, replying to a question during his press conference, said, "It is condemnable, entire case is false, even if you have to identify them you can call them for investigation.""This is to put fear in the minds of the students that they will put you in custody. If this is the state of the mind, it is incompatible with democracy," he added.Police on Sunday arrested Asif Iqbal Tanha around 8 p.m. from his residence in Delhi. IANS


Asif’s arrest is shameful, SIO demands to MHA to release all anti-CAA activists and political prisoners immediately

 SIO member and Jamia student activist who plyed a crucial role in the anti-CAA movement has been arrested by Delhi police on Sunday. Issuing a press note SIO demaned release of all political prisoners including Jamia student activist and SIO member Asif Iqbal.Responding to the arrest of Asif Iqbal SIO of India President Labeed Shafi said, “Asif Iqbal’s arrest is shameful, arbitrary and a blot on the constitution.”“He has been arrested by Delhi police on trumped up charges”.“We know for a fact that this repeated harassment followed by the arrest is not for any crime Asif may supposedly have committed. His only crime has been exercising his God-given right to question the government and assert his status as a free citizen of India. This is the same crime for which Meeran Haider,Safoora Zargar and many others have been arrested,” Shafi said in a presser issued on Monday. TDN World

Student leader Asif Tanha arrested in Jamia violence case



Indian worker in UAE fired for islamobhobic social media posts

DUBAI:An Indian working in a mining company in UAE has become latest expatriate to have lost his job for “Islamophobic” social media posts, a media report said on May 18. Brajkishore Gupta was fired without notice for calling Indian Muslims ‘coronavirus spreaders’ and hailing Delhi riots as ‘divine justice’ in his Facebook posts, Gulf News reported. Gupta, who is from Chapra, Bihar, was employed by Stevin Rock, a mining company headquartered in Ras Al Khaimah city.“This isolated incident involving a junior employee was investigated and dealt with immediately, resulting in the termination without notice of this person’s employment with Stevin Rock,” said company’s business development and exploration manager.PTI


Now New Zealand throws Indian of Gujarati origin out of judicial body for Islamophobic social media posts

An Indian of Gujarati origin, Kantilal Bhagabhai Patel, has been thrown out of a prominent judicial body in New Zealand for his Islamophobic social media posts. Patel has lost his membership of Wellington Justices of Peace (JP) Association after some of his social media posts were found to be anti-Muslim in nature. A report by Indian News said that Ann Clark, who is the Vice President of the Wellington Justices of Peace Association, had confirmed his removal from the prestigious body. Clark told the newspaper, “Association received a complaint and it was investigated. Patel is no longer a member of Wellington JP Association.”She added, “Wellington Justices of the Peace Association has referred the matter to the national body representing Justices of the Peace and asked them to consult with the Ministry of Justice.”Clark had earlier expressed her horror in an email to a complainant, who objected to Patel’s Islamophobic social media posts. Responding to the complainant, she had written, “We were appalled at the posts. We have completed our investigation and have concluded that these posts were not consistent with the standards expected of a Justice of the Peace. Patel has been advised of that and the consequences for him. We are in the process of dealing with that.”jantakareporter


Another Hate Crime: Kashmiri Businessman Attacked by Goons in Mumbai

New Delhi:A Kashmiri businessman was thrashed by a gang of goons in Mumbai in the intervening night of Sunday and Monday.He laid on the road scarred and bruised.Mohammad Adnan, 25, a businessman from Srinagar, was waylaid by three men on the street when he was returning to his apartment in the Mohammad Ali Road area of the city at around midnight. He had gone out to buy bread and Pulav for Sehri.Speaking to Clarion India shortly after the incident, Adnan said as he was about to reach his apartment, he saw a group of men having a squabble with a food delivery boy from Zamato. “While I was entering the building, one of the men grabbed me by my throat,” Adnan said. “They left the Zamato guy aside and started beating me. They tore apart my shirt.”Adnan who has beard and a skull cap said that the men abused him and called him names using communal and regional slurs. “They addressed me with a refrain, ‘you Kashmiris are like this’.”Clarion India


Gopalganj case: Boy drowns in river, right-wing propaganda site OpIndia claims, was sacrificed in mosque

In an article published on May 9, right-wing propaganda website OpIndia claimed that a mosque sacrificed a Hindu boy in Bihar’s Gopalganj. “A new mosque had been built in the village and it is being alleged that there was a belief that if a Hindu was ‘sacrificed’, the mosque would become powerful and its influence would increase,” wrote OpIndia claiming that 15-year-old Rohit, son of Rajesh Jaiswal, was killed in Bela Dih village of Kataiya. The article also stated that the boy’s family had to leave the village because of police brutality. “She [Rohit’s sister] alleges that the police had taken a bribe from the accused, hence they were not taking any action against the killers,” read the article.“The guardians of those Muslim children, who were sent to call Rohit, were waiting for all the children in that new mosque. When they reached there along with Rohit, he was captured and allegedly strangulated to death, family alleges. There are allegations that six people were involved in the heinous act,” it further stated, claiming that the victim’s sister alleged that his dead body was thrown in a river.altnews


Ranchi: Hindpiri sees mob violence for second consecutive day

Ranchi: Hours after CRPF personnel deployed in Hindpiri area were attacked by a large group of people on Saturday night, a mob attacked a police party, comprising CRPF personnel and a DSP rank official, near Moti Masjid on Sunday. Police sources said that soon after a CRPF unit of 218 D battalion — comprising 11 personnel, led by inspector Baldev Raj — reached Hindpiri after change of shift and were planning to conduct a flag march near Moti Masjid, around 500 persons came onto streets,hurling stones at them. As CRPF personnel were outnumbered, they cancelled the flag march and tried to escape through another route but they were surrounded by a crowd which continued to hurl stones at them.Ranchi police are collecting evidence, including video footage, to take legal action against people involved in mob violence at Hindpiri on Saturday night. Armed with lathis and swords, the mob had attacked police and CRPF unit at Hindpiri third street around 8pm on Saturday. Mob anger sparked off after a former councillor, Mohammad Aslam, was allegedly beaten up by CRPF.  TOI


Maharashtra: 2 policemen killed in Naxal ambush

Nagpur : In a setback to Gadchiroli police, 2 policemen were killed when Naxalites allegedly ambushed a C60 commando party in Poyarkoti-Koparshi area in Bhamragad tehsil on Sunday morning. 3 cops were injured and are being treated, a press note by Gadchiroli police, press note said,” Police Sub-inspector Dhanaji Honmane, around 30 years of age,and constable Kishore Atram, about 32-year-old, became martyrs in the encounter between 6 am and 6.30 am on Sunday.A senior police official said that three other policemen were also injured in the ambush. The press note, however, was silent on injuries to anyone.


India's extradition request for Dawood aide Tiger Hanif refused by UK

British government has turned down India's request for the extradition of Tiger Hanif, an alleged aide of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, UK Home Office has confirmed.Hanif, whose full name is Mohammed Hanif Umerji Patel, was traced to a grocery store in Bolton, Greater Manchester, and arrested by Scotland Yard on an extradition warrant in Feb.2010.57-year-old since lost a number of legal bids to stay in Britain, claiming that he will be tortured in India. However, his final bid to then Home Secretary Sajid Javid succeeded as Paki-origin minister refused the request last year.We can confirm that the extradition request for Hanif Patel was refused by the then Home Secretary and Patel was discharged by the court in Aug.2019, a UK Home Office source said on


Samajwadi Party workers did not shout ‘Pakistan Zindabad’ at Mumbai railway station

New Delhi: A video of Samajwadi Party workers and supporters allegedly shouting ‘Pakistan Zindabad’ at a railway platform in Mumbai has gone viral on social media. The post accompanying the video reads, “Pakistan Zindabad being chanted in independent India in Shivaji’s homeland? We are ashamed, Balasaheb Thackeray. Is secularism same as appeasement?”On Twitter, the video has received over 3,100 retweets and more than 3,200 likes so far. It has also been widely shared on Facebook with a post gathering more than 700 shares. Samajwadi’s local district head Sajid Siddiqui can be seen in video. The accompanying post also targets Abu Azmi, Maharashtra head of the party.theprint

Amphan Intensifies Into Super Cyclone: Orange Warning For Bengal, Evacuations In Odisha

Amphan, which intensified into an extremely severe cyclonic storm over the Bay of Bengal early morning, intensified into a super cyclone on Monday afternoon, Indian Met Dept said. Amphan is likely to cross West Bengal and Bangladesh coasts on May 20 as very severe cyclonic storm, IMD said. Thousands are being evacuated in Odisha from vulnerable areas on state’s coast, Special Relief Commissioner PK Jena said.On Sunday night, Amphan had intensified into a very severe cyclonic storm,  attaining a maximum wind speed of 170 to 180 kmph gusting to 200 kmph. MeT has issued an ‘orange’ warning for West Bengal.


Netanyahu will fight ICC’s investigation into Israel’s war crimes

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he considers a war crimes investigation by the International Criminal Court (ICC) a “strategic threat” to Israel if it goes ahead, and one of the new government’s primary objectives would be to prevent such a probe.Announcing it at the government’s first cabinet meeting, Netanyahu claimed that prosecuting Israel for alleged crimes it committed against the Palestinian Authority (PA) is a “rare strategic threat to Israel.”“This is a worrying development,” said Netanyahu. “There is a word that I almost never use. Right, I don’t use the word ‘strategic.’ But here I will use this word, strategic. This is a strategic threat to the State of Israel – to IDF soldiers, to the commanders, to the ministers, to the governments, to everything,” he added. “We will discuss this in a separate forum.”


Netanyahu: It is time to implement Israel’s sovereignty over West Bank

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu said that new Israeli coalition govt should extend the state’s sovereignty over the occupied West Bank, local media reported.“It’s time to apply the Israeli law and write another glorious chapter in history of Zionism,” Netanyahu said during a meeting for Knesset General Commission to discuss the swearing in of the new coalition govt.“These territories [illegal Israeli Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank] are where the Jewish nation was born and grew,” he said of the settlements.



Saudi debts increased 1500% during Salman's rule

Saudi’s national debt has increased 1,500% since King Salman came to power in 2015 according to data released by the World Bank.At the end of 2019, the kingdom’s debt reached $183.7 billion, compared to $11.8 billion in 2014; a rise of over 1,560 per cent, according to data collected by Arabi21.Saudi Finance Minister, Mohammed Al-Jadaan, announced his government plans to borrow 220 billion riyals ($58 billion) this year, this will push the country’s debt to a quarter of a trillion dollars.


Detained Saudi cleric Al-Ouda speaks to his family from his cell

Detained Saudi cleric, Sheikh Salman Al-Ouda, has contacted his family with recordings of the calls being shared on social media.Prisoners of Conscience Twitter account, which is concerned with the rights of political detainees in Saudi Arabia, shared the phone call between Al-Ouda and his mother. He could be heard reassuring his mother, saying “I swear to God I am fine.”His mother tells him about the Ramadan arrangements in their home: “We’ve setup a mosque at home, pray taraweeh [evening prayers]; Moaz comes here and prays with us.” Al-Ouda then speaks to his daughter Ghada, who inquires after his health: “Hello, how are you? We miss you. Tell us, how is your health?” Al-Ouda replied saying that he is fine and in good health. References to the taraweeh prayer, which are only held in Ramadan, and Ghada’s questions regarding how her father is coping with fasting prove the recording is from Muslim holy month of fasting, which began in late April.


Russia thwarts Syria regime plans to control south

Russia has been working against the Syrian regime and allied militias’ plans to control southern Syria; a Free Syrian Army officer said.Abu-Yarub Al-Daraawi told Al-Mujtama news site that Russians have regime forces and their militias not to launch a military operation in the region, adding that the commander of the Russian forces in southern Syria said during a meeting with the central committees in Daraa on Friday that his country is “seriously” working to prevent any accidents or military operations in the area. Russian commander is reported to have pledged that regime forces will not be allowed to storm the province and that the Russian military police will patrol Daraa to monitor and limit the regime’s deployment in the area.


Iran denies deal on removal of Syria's Assad from power

A senior adviser to Iran’s parliament speaker on Sunday denied reports about reaching an agreement with Russia on the removal of Bashar al-Assad from power in Syria, Anadolu reports. Hossein Amir-Abdollahian described al-Assad as “the legitimate president of Syria.”“Report of a deal between Iran and Russia for his resignation is a big lie and a game by the US-Zionist media,” Amir-Abdollahian said.“Tehran strongly supports the sovereignty, national unity and territorial integrity of Syria,” he added.



US to be expelled from Syria, Iraq: Ayatollah Khamenei

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that US will soon be expelled from Syria and Iraq, "where it is illegally present in the two Arab countries".Khamenei made the remarks in a video-conference meeting with the Iranian students on Sunday, reports Xinhua news agency."For sure, Americans will not remain in Iraq and Syria, and they will be expelled" from those countries as the Americans "have supported terrorism" and "are abhorred" by the regional nations, he added.IANS


Assad's cousin rejects govt demand he step down from mobile operator

Syrian tycoon Rami Makhlouf said on Sunday that authorities had set a deadline for him to resign from top mobile operator Syriatel or they would revoke its licence but that he would not step down, Reuters reports.In a video, the third he has issued bringing into the open a rift with his cousin Syrian President Bashar al Assad, Makhlouf said collapse of Syriatel, a main revenue earner for the government, would deal a “catastrophic” blow to the economy.Makhlouf was part of the president’s inner circle and has played a big role in financing Assad’s war effort, Western officials have said, citing his business empire which includes telecoms, real estate, construction and oil trading.“If you don’t comply … the licence will be revoked and they said you have until Sunday to either comply or the company will be taken and its assets seized,” Makhlouf said.


Egypt: Mada Masr editor Lina Attalah released on bail

The editor-in-chief of a prominent investigative media outlet in Egypt, Mada Masr, has been released hours after being arrested by security forces in Cairo.Lina Attalah was arrested outside the capital's Tora Prison complex where she was interviewing Laila Soueif, the mother of jailed activist Alaa Abdel Fattah.Attalah's arrest is the latest amid a wider crackdown on dissent in the North African country.Mada Masr is one of the hundreds of websites blocked by the Egyptian government in recent years.aljazeera


King upholds Muhyiddin as Malaysia PM in brief Parliament sitting

Malaysia's king on Monday said the appointment of Muhyiddin Yassin as prime minister after a power grab two months ago was proper and constitutional, as Parliament met for a single day and a vote on an opposition challenge to Muhyiddin's leadership was postponed.The king appointed Muhyiddin to the top job on March 1, saying he believed the veteran politician had the support of a majority of the 222 members of Parliament's lower house. Muhyiddin's administration includes parties that had been rejected by voters in the May 2018 election, and was challenged by the opposition - Muhyiddin's former allies in Pakatan Harapan - who said they were the ones with the majority.



Taliban talks in sight as Afghan political rivals end feud

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and his rival Abdullah Abdullah signed a power-sharing deal on Sunday to end the months-long political crisis, a step that is expected to boost efforts to move the peace process forward.Abdullah, who had disputed the election result and declared himself president in February, appointed as the chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR) that will hold talks with the Taliban armed group.US had been pushing Afghanistan's divided leadership to bury their differences and begin the so-called intra-Afghan talks after it signed an agreement with the Taliban on Feb.29 aimed at ending the 19-year war.Abdullah's group will get 50 cabinet appointments and other provincial governors' posts as part of the deal.US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo welcomed the deal. "Secretary Pompeo noted that he regretted the time lost during the political impasse," State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement.aljazeera

Afghan intelligence officials killed in Taliban car bombing

A car bomb attack targeting an Afghan intelligence agency installation in the eastern province of Ghazni has killed at least 7 people and wounded 40 others, an official said."The terrorists have used a humvee in their attack. They have targeted the National Directorate of Security unit in Ghazni city," Wahidullah Jumazada, spokesman for the governor, told the AFP on Monday."Most of the victims are intelligence personnel," Jumazada added.Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said the armed group was behind the attack in Ghazni province, a Taliban stronghold.


*views, Articles, FEATURES*

We will have to put India, and humanity, before everything else in the battle against hatred:Salman Khurshid

Is Lack of Leadership why Indian Muslims are Falling Behind?Syed Ubaidur Rahman

Why does Indian media detest Muslims so much? Syed Ali Mujtaba

Thomas Hegghammer's the Caravan: Abdallah Azzam and Rise of Global Jihad review – recent history at its finest: Reviewed by Ian Black, the guardian

How We Became Refugees: The Day My Grandfather Lost His Village in Palestine

Ramadan drama exposes Egypt's paradoxical relationship with Israel: AJ Naddaff in Cairo, middleeasteye

Fact-check: Did TN govt direct temples to pay Rs 10cr to fund 5,450 tonne free rice to mosques?altnews

Video of attack on doctor in UP’s Aligarh shared with misleading narrative

When humour and banter enlivened proceedings:Soli J. Sorabjee

If there's no additional borrowing, there can be no additional expenditure, no fiscal stimulus:P Chidambaram

Remembering women of Shaheen Bagh, who showed how poetry can overpower violence and hate:Saeed Akhtar Mirza

Muslim Women in Ranchi Lead Efforts In Providing Relief For Migrant, Daily Workers Amid Lockdown

Once Called 'Living Monument Of UPA's Failures' By PM Modi, Will MGNREGA Help During Covid-19?Mirza Arif Beg

Unmourned Of Kashmir:Qadri Inzamam

Tablighi Guidebook ‘Fazail-E-Amaal’ Shown As ‘Jihadi Literature’ In Amazon Prime Web Series Pataal Lok

Community-Based Mapping of Covid: Nothing Official About it:Subhash Gatade

Pandemic Has Only Exposed Suicidal Tendencies of Capitalism: Noam Chomsky

Modi's 'Stimulus Package' is a Gigantic Confidence Trick Played on the People of India:Prem Shankar Jha

SC can’t ‘monitor’ walking migrants, but 12 HCs have issued orders on food and shelter:APOORVA MANDHANI

Rescripting north-east Delhi riots – and the question of justice: Radhika Chitkara and Vikas Kumar

Those booked by police under draconian laws: Umar Khalid

Six reasons why Modi government is squarely responsible for India’s worst migrant crisis:Supriya Sharma

Is Islamophobia a new phenomenon in Independent India…?Syed Azharuddin


 Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 9:47 PM)


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